Keir Starmer has complained to the head of the civil service after a spat between political journalists and Downing Street. The row broke out after No. 10 insisted that only ‘senior, specialist members of the lobby’ could attend a briefing with Brexit negotiator David Frost. Several journalists decided to walk out of No. 10 as a result.
But now Sir Keir has come to their rescue. The Labour leadership hopeful has written to Sir Mark Sedwill criticising Boris Johnson’s media operation. In the letter, which carries Starmer’s official campaign logo, the former Corbyn loyalist complained that briefing attendees ‘should not be determined by political favouritism’.
The Holborn MP goes on to say that ‘banning sections of the media from attending important briefings about important matters of Government is damaging to democracy’, calling the decision ‘deeply disturbing’.
Would that be the same Keir Starmer who, just last month, told a leadership hustings that he was refusing to talk to a specific newspaper? ‘I certainly won’t be giving any interviews to the Sun during the course of this campaign,’ he informed Labour members in Liverpool. Mr S wonders whether Starmer finds his own newspaper boycott ‘deeply disturbing’?